The owner and operator of an oil tanker that leaked more than 400 gallons of oil into San Francisco Bay in 2009 will pay nearly $2 million to local and state authorities in a settlement filed in court Tuesday.
The tanker Dubai Star leaked the fuel into the water south of the Bay Bridge during a bunkering operation, or fuel transfer, with a fuel barge early in the morning of Oct. 30, 2009. The spill killed dozens of birds and other wildlife, and affected a lengthy stretch of Alameda County’s shoreline.
“The spill was caused by overlapping mechanical, electronic, and human failures,” according to a statement from the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office. “Although the initial cause of the spill was a mechanical failure of the valve, the spill was allowed to occur because warning devices apparently failed and safety procedures and protocols were not followed.”
The district attorney’s offices from Alameda and San Francisco counties and the state Department of Fish and Game negotiated a $1.96 million settlement with the operator of the vessel, Dubai-based Pioneer Ship Management Services, and its owner, South Harmony Shipping, based in Panama.
“The Dubai Star settlement will ensure our local environment is restored and help deter such events from occurring in the future,” District Attorney George Gascón said in a statement.
— Staff, wire report